Kaczynski Ruled Competent

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SACRAMENTO: So Ted Kaczynski is competent to stand trial, in that he understands the charges against him. Since the 55-year-old Harvard grad has already tested at near-genius IQ levels, Tuesday's decision from court-appointed psychiatrist Dr. Sally Johnson should come as no surprise. What Johnson also determined, according to the Associated Press, is that Kaczynski suffers from paranoid schizophrenia and that's opened a new round of plea bargain negotiations.

If the alleged Unabomber is mentally ill, that makes him a lot harder to execute and gives the government extra impetus to wrap up the trial before it gets going. Judge Garland Burrell has warned the jury to prepare for opening arguments Thursday, when he is expected to turn down Kaczynski's request to represent himself. Considering the defendant's performance thus far in a trial reporters have dubbed "Mr. Ted's Wild Ride," however, that won't gag him. Dropping the death penalty now in exchange for a guilty plea would certainly make sense for the DOJ.